My life changed dramatically and forever when I lost TJ.

I welcome you to follow along as I adjust to my "new normal".

It is not all puppies and ice cream but it is my life....real and honest.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Do You Believe Everything Happens For A Reason?

I do. But, I also believe in Karma and Destiny. Yes, I believe everything happens for a reason....even death. Not for one instance am I saying that TJ "deserved" to die...absolutely not. What I am saying is that he did very good things for a lot of people during his lifetime and his number was up. He wasted not a single minute of his life, he lived it to the fullest. Anyone that knew him will most certainly agree with me on that. He was a very generous man, more than probably most realized. He always kept cash in his gun safe and often when a close friend would be at our house lamenting about how they needed money for something I would see him walk into where his safe was and pull out $100 to $200 and simply hand it to that person. He never asked to be paid back, he only wanted to help his friend in their time of dire need. Only the recipients knew of him doing this and I know his generosity was never taken advantage of. I must admit that every time he did this it brought a tear to my eye. We were at a point in our lives that he could do that for his friends and he was happy to do it. He also gave of his time and carpentry talent. Wow, just writing this brings back a flood of memories of how much he truly gave during the 17 years I was with him.

I have endured a lot since losing TJ and I believe it too has happened for a reason. I know that many of the people that are in my life now would not be there if TJ had not died. I learned who my true friends were and more importantly I have learned who was toxic in my life. Because of TJ's illness I have become closer to both my brother and my sister. While I was busy grieving TJ, I was not there for my Mother in her final days as much as I should have been but I know she understood. My Mother was a young widow before she married my Father and her words to me after TJ died were priceless and a conversation that I will never forget. For the first time in my life I followed her advice and I so wish she was here to see that I actually listened to her. Yes Mom, you were right about everything. She understood.

When I think about how my life has changed since losing TJ I can't help but believe it happened for a reason. I have grown and changed so very much. His death has forced me to look at life in a completely different light. I appreciate the small stuff so much more. I know TJ is looking at me thinking, "Geesh Sandy, it took my death for you to finally get it!". Yes! Yes, it did. I don't wish the horrors of grief upon anyone, but for me it did wonders for my soul.

I wasn't comfortable with it, but I needed to stop, get out of my own head and see the big picture. I found out that I had been looking at things all wrong. I found new potential, new possibilities and it is liberating. What I thought was a hopeless situation suddenly looked good. I know that there is no pit too deep that I can't climb out of. Life is very simply just a bunch of stories. They all end sooner or later and that is OK. I am moving on to my next story.

I believe we don't always know or understand why things happen. Some things we may never understand why, but there is a reason even though we don't see or understand it. The universe knows and we must put our faith in that.

Am I grateful for TJ's death?....oh HELL NO! But, I can appreciate what it taught me and yes, I do believe it happened for a reason. I believe he died 7 months before my Mother so she could impart her valuable wisdom to me. I believe I needed the people who are in my life now that never would have been if not for his death. I believe I needed this to grow, to learn how to truly live.

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Flowers for Leontien

Today I am participating in a very special blog event. 

Leontien Vandelaar of Four Leaf Clover Dairy is battling cancer. We want to show Leontien that her blogging community is there for her at this very difficult time by posting a flower photo for her.

{{HUGS}} to you Leontien, you are in so many people's thoughts today and always.

Link to Flowers For Leontien to join in.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Senseless Snapshots

I got this shot with my cell!
It still amazes me what we can do with our cells these days.
My Dad taught me photography with a 35mm.
Now everything is digital and "touched up".

  I frequently go through this stoplight during my work day.
It is on the Reservation.
I giggle every time it turns green.

 I spotted these in the grocery store last week.
If they are left over from last Christmas that is gross!
If they are for this coming Christmas then I am appalled!

 We finally hit 100 degrees!
I am a summer aficionado & so are my dogs.
They are waiting on my arrival so we can all spend some time in the sun.

Tater Tot loves the waterfall!
If you look carefully you will see the dove he is having a stand off with.
Tater won.....

I finally broke down and bought the most talked about book as of late.
I am fairly hard to please when it comes to erotic fiction so we will see how it stacks up.

Tater Tot ~ Still a Puppy at Heart
Just because he is so darn cute!
(turn your sound on for this one)

Thanks for visiting and I am off to read my new book. I will let you know my opinion...for what it is worth.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Life. Love. Infinite. Within You. Now. Always

A friend shared this amazing video with me and I just had to share it with all of you.

I found it very inspirational. Please let me know your thoughts.

"and if you could love enough you would be the happiest and most powerful person in the world"

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Time To Take On Something New

I have to stop analyzing why I made the choices that I have in the past or where I have gone wrong. Standing right where I am at this moment in life I have to decide that I want something different and do something about it. While change can be scary, it can also be very refreshing.

I am in charge of my life. I don't have to wait for something to happen to me to make changes. Change doesn't always come from the outside. It is simply time, time to start making some new decisions. Time to change things up a bit.

I find it empowering to take on a new challenge or a new habit. Making a new decision can be very refreshing. I am not just taking on a new activity. I am taking on my life. I know that what I have to look forward to is much greater than what I am leaving behind.

It is easy to believe I have no more chances and to not take responsibility for creating a world as I want it. Sure, there are things that I cannot control, but I also know I am very powerful and can accomplish a lot once I am willing to make a decision and take a chance.

Over the past few years I have proven to myself that I can transform hardship into growth and loss into gain. When I am faced with a stressful situation I simply remember that how I handle it not only shapes today, but it shapes tomorrow also.

"A diamond is just a piece of charcoal that handled stress exceptionally well." ~ Unknown

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Standing Up Again....

"Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day." ~ Henri Nouwen

Yeah, well, I haven't been very good at the above lately. As you all know I have been suspiciously missing from twitter and blogging. Many, many thanks to those of you who called or emailed to check on me.

I took another hit, but this time I choose to not complain publicly about it. I drew inward and worked it out in my head. I choose the old adage "if you don't have anything good to say then don't say anything at all".

But, with a smile on my face, I can honestly say that I am back and I can't wait to see what my wonderful blogging friends have been up to. I am afraid to jinx it, but with extreme caution I will say that once again my life is pretty darn good.

I have even managed to stumble upon some very unexpected joy in my life (no, I have not adopted another dog!). I took a leap of faith and said “yes” to something I wasn’t sure about. I am still not sure. I can tell you though that unexpected joy is sometimes the most satisfying.

“Our brightest blazes of gladness are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks”. ~ Samuel Johnson